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Weaponizing Transparency: Guy Benson and Casey Mattox at the Resurgent Gathering

It shouldn’t be much of a surprise to admit that the tribalism in our country has gotten out of hand. Our modern outrage culture has led to invasions of privacy. Why have things gotten so bad?

Here at the Resurgent Gathering, Erick Erickson held a conversation with Guy Benson, a contributor to Town Hall and Fox News, and Casey Mattox, VP of Legal & Judicial Strategy at Americans for Prosperity.

Benson began this discussion relating the story of Brendan Eich, the Mozilla founder who was ousted from the company he started over his support of traditional marriage. Benson said the Eich incident became a catalyst for pushback against outrage culture.

The left has made an art of weaponizing transparency in their attempts to stifle opposition and make people scared to cross them. One of the most egregious examples of this phenomenon was the IRS’ targeting of conservatives during the Obama administration.

Donor disclosure laws that Democrats – and some Republicans – threaten are the next level of weaponizing transparency. These potential measures could actually put discrimination into law. As Benson put it, ” Donor lists can become ideological hit lists.”

Additionally, look at the boast from Montana Governor and Democratic presidential candidate Steve Bullock that he “kick[ed] the Koch brothers out of Montana,” and you can see how politicians want to “use the tool of government to bully their opponents,” as Mattox phrased the matter.

What many of these politicians don’t realize is that voters are getting wise to the weaponization of transparency.

“Most Americans don’t like mob rule. When you force people into silence and they go into the privacy of the voting booth,” said Benson. “That’s literally how we got Donald Trump.”

We’ve even reached the point where the New York Times editorial page has suggested doxxing border patrol agents. Punishing people for doing their jobs when you don’t agree with the laws they enforce is beyond the pale.

Lest you think this phenomenon lives only on the left, Republicans are beginning to think about measures like these in their obsession with whataboutism.

“I’m afraid we’re going to see an organized effort for the right to try to employ these same tactics as the left,” Erick Erickson pointed out. “If we go down this road and try to weaponize this, it becomes a dangerous game that I don’t think conservatives can win.”

Tribalism in this country has gotten out of control, and the panelists laid the problem of tribalism at the feet of those who politicize everything in our culture. Benson hit the nail on the head when he pointed out how politics has invaded sports and other portions of American life that used to otherwise be apolitical.

“We don’t need more politics in our country,” he said. I couldn’t have put it better myself.


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